Spice up your Thanksgiving with Small Axe Peppers!
Thanksgiving is the best. Simply, the best.
Seriously. Who doesn’t love Thanksgiving? Even people who hate their families still love Thanksgiving. For some reason, unlike Christmas, or New Years (or your birthday) it seems to always live up to the hype. But why? Well for, one it’s simple. It doesn’t bring any unfair expectations. Nope, it’s just a joyous celebration that only requires you to be thankful, be happy, and eat. More specifically: to eat well.
Everybody knows the essentials: turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, green beans, etc, etc, etc. My mouth is already watering as I daydream about my plate smothering my plate, which loaded to the brim, with my Uncle’s gravy. However, there has always been one major gap in the ‘ole Thanksgiving meal. And what may that be?
A little spice. Some heat. Un poco de picante.
It’s not so much that the food isn’t already primed for the spice, it’s more that traditionally there wasn’t such an abundance of delicious hot sauces to douse your plate with.
Well, times have changed. We are now in the 3rd Generation of Hot Sauce, and we’re long overdue for a little evolution in our Thanksgiving tradition. And what better way to evolve than add the much needed dimension of heat?
So here are some creative ways to spice up your Thanksgiving plate thanks to the help Small Axe’s wide-ranging spectrum of flavor and heat.
Spice up your Thanksgiving with:
1) Red Hot Jalapeño Mac’n’Cheese
What better Thanksgiving staple is begging for little spice more than Mac’n’Cheese? This dish is about American as it gets and deserves a spot on everyone’s plate. Of course, America is changing — one could even say it’s becoming… spicier? Why not let the ‘ole Mac’n’Cheese follow suit? Spice up your Thanksgiving with this recipe:
- 1 teaspoon of The Chicago Red Hot Jalapeño Hot Sauce
- 2 Tablespoons Butter
- 3 Tablespoons Jalapeno Pepper (finely minced, may use more depending on spice preference)
- 4 Green Onions (white and light green parts diced)
- 2 Tablespoons Flour
- 1 cup Heavy Cream
- 1 cup Whole Milk (may use 2% but whole is preferred)
- 3 cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese (grated)
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt (more if needed for taste)
- 1/2 lb. Elbow, Cellentani, or Cavatappi Pasta
In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add the jalapeno and green onions and saute for 5 minutes, stirring often.
Whisk in the flour and continue to cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring often.
Pour in the heavy cream and whole milk and whisk together. Add cheese, 1 cup at a time, until melted, stirring well after each addition. Let cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring often.
Meanwhile, cook 1/2 pound of pasta according to package instructions. Generously salt the water to ensure the pasta is well seasoned. Once pasta is done cooking, drain well, and combine with cheese sauce.
Serve immediately while warm.
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (2 oz), plus more for the baking dish
2) Mango-Habanero Glazed Ham
We felt it may be a little blasphemous to go after the Turkey, but ham? Well, that’s fair game. People have already been glazing it over for years. Well, this year will be a little different. Why? Because this year’s ham is going to have a hint of heat (not to mention the delicious fruity mango flavors!), which will spice up your Thanksgiving right. Ham straight! Check out the recipe:
- 1 cup drained canned crushed mango in juice
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 3 tablespoon minced scallion
- 2 teaspoon minced seeded habanero
- 1-1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 8- to 10-lb. bone-in butt-end half city ham
- Blend all ingredients, score the ham and lather all over the ham.
- Cover with foil loosely and cook ham per package instructions. Take foil off the last 20-30 minutes. Enjoy!
3) Habanero-Ginger Hard Apple Cider
You’re going to need a nice beverage to top off all this delicious food with, aren’t you? Yes, you are. This year, add a little spice to your cider. Trust us, all of these flavors with blend together beautifully with this beverage, with as much as sweet as there is heat. It’s a truly adult way to spice up your Thanksgiving. Check out the recipe:
- 1.5 oz. teaspoon of Small Axe Peppers Habanero Ginger Hot Sauce
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 2 habanero peppers, sliced thinly
- 2 large strips sliced ginger
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon, for glass rim
- 2 tsp coarse sugar, for glass rim
- 6 oz. apple cider, plus more for glass rim
- 3 oz. dark rum
- Sliced apple, for garnish
In a small saucepan, bring sugar, water, sliced habanero, and ginger to a boil. Once mixture comes to a boil, lower the heat to a simmer and let simmer for about 10 minutes.
Pour simple syrup into a heat-proof jar or container, straining the habaneros and ginger out, and place in the fridge to cool.
On a small plate, mix together cinnamon and coarse sugar. Brush a little apple cider around the rims of your cocktail glasses and dip glasses into cinnamon/sugar mixture. Fill glasses with ice.
In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add 2 oz. habanero ginger simple syrup, apple cider, and rum. Shake to combine and pour into prepared glasses.
Garnish glasses with an apple slice.
Spice up your Thanksgiving in your own way
This isn’t the first time Thanksgiving tradition has been shaken up. Did you know that Thanksgiving’s date was adjusted in 1939 by FDR to give consumers more time to give consumers more time to shop. Shake things up yourself by experimenting with Small Axe’s full spectrum of flavors. Buy in bulk and get a discount our six pack combo here: